Friday, January 17, 2014

Sam Spina's Favorite Comics of 2013

As is our annual tradition, we invited a number of our friends who are also cartoonists, comics publishers and editors to tell us what their favorite comics of 2013 were. We'll be publishing them all over the next few weeks.

Sam Spina is a prolific cartoonist, perhaps best known for Spinadoodles. Visit his website.


Mimi and the Wolves by Alabaster
Beautiful, dramatic and inspiring. Alabaster’s books are the reason I love comics so much. 100% handmade and uniquely ‘her’. That’s dumb, I can’t really explain what I mean. I just love her stuff and this is her best book yet, I can’t wait for part two. It’s just so PRETTY. If I could get any cartoonist to draw me a tattoo it would be her.

Weekend Alone by Noah Van Sciver (Tinto Press)
Noah is my favorite writer in comics and I think he put out the best Blammo so far this year, but I'm going to choose his sketchbook put out by Tinto Press instead. The range of his comic is incredible, the super funny highs are complemented with some really crushingly sad lows. He makes some of the best comics I've ever read in his freaking SKETCHBOOK! It's crazy! I always wish I could make more heartfelt comics after reading one of his books and I’m eagerly anticipating his next book, Saint Cole, which will, for sure, make my list next year.

Blindspot #3 by Joseph Remnant
Much like Noah’s Blammo series, Blindspot is a one man anthology that is written and drawn beautifully. Joseph’s comics have a more melancholy tone to me, and even when his comics are funny (I had a genuine laugh out loud moment reading this comic), they’re still a little more mellow. Maybe it’s all the hatching. Reading Blindspot is like seeing the world through Joseph’s eyes, and the whole book just comes across as something really honest and genuine to me.

Little Tommy Lost by Cole Closser (Koyama)
I’ll read anything that Koyama puts out, so picking up this book was a no brainer for me. I have to say I was a little cold on this one right from the start because it’s written in an old timey voice, like ‘Ladies an’ Gen’l’men! Read all abouddit!’ for example. It was distracting at first but a couple strips in and you’re transported to a different world! Everything is just so well done, it’s impossible to not get sucked in and read the whole thing in one sitting. It made me want to search out old newspaper comics, but I stopped because I knew they wouldn’t be this good.

Ariol: Just a Donkey Like You and Me by Emmanuel Guibert and Marc Boutavant
I love a good kids comic, and this was definitely the best one I read all year. This would make my list on character design alone, but man it’s really really funny! The stories encapsulate being a little kid in a very cute and relatable way. Very sweet.

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